A few days ago, I saw a set of “Bad Parent” memes posted on the Facebook. the message they conveyed was this: If your kid does something wrong, it’s all your fault because your a bad parent, and you should be ashamed of yourself. Yeah.
Firstly, this is an extreme oversimplification. There are so many factors (and people) that can influence a child’s behavior. Even if a parent does everything right, their child could still behave in ways that are undesirable. But hey, maybe some of it is our fault. Maybe kids wouldn’t lie so much if their parents wouldn’t have overreacted in the past. Maybe they would have an easier time standing up for themselves if their parents weren’t always talking down to them. But what good does it do to beat ourselves up about it? How does it help to bully ourselves, and call ourselves bad parents? How can we have compassion for our kids if we can’t have compassion for ourselves? How can we forgive our kids if we can’t forgive ourselves? How can we love our kids, if we can’t first love ourselves?
You and I are not bad parents. We are growing parents. We are learning parents. We are trying, and getting better every day. Are we perfect? No, far from it. Do we make mistakes? Of course. But maybe our kids don’t need perfect parents. Maybe what our kids need is someone that can show them how to get up after they’ve fallen down. how to admit that they’ve made a mistake. And how to show love and compassion to broken, hurting, imperfect people.
Thanks for reading,